Skip To Main Content

News Details

Rondout Valley Students Shine at Science Research Symposium

Rondout Valley High School (RVHS) held a Science Research Symposium on June 6. The event featured presentations by six Grade 12 students and poster presentations by several Grade 10 students. 

Science Research is a three-year, inquiry-based program administered by SUNY Albany. During the course of the program, students learn how to conduct authentic, collegiate-level research while working under the guidance of a research mentor. In addition, they earn three Regents science credits, as well as up to 12 college credits. 

Starting in Grade 10, students learn how to read professional literature, and they pick a topic that is of particular interest to them. Among the most challenging parts of this program is finding a mentor to work with. Mentors are usually a college professor, a PhD student, or a PhD researcher working in a field connected to the student’s topic.

During the second and third years of the program, students conduct research, write scientific papers, and compete in several competitions culminating in the Science Research Symposium. Throughout their time in the Science Research Program, students are honing their critical thinking and problem-solving skills while interacting with collegiate and professional researchers in their field.

The evening event featured three initial presentations, followed by a 45-minute intermission. During the intermission, students were available to answer questions about their projects. There was a student jazz ensemble that played, and refreshments were provided. Following intermission, the final three presenters took the stage to discuss their journey through the program and their findings.

RVHS Principal Jessica Torok shared how impressed she was with the presentations. “It is just amazing the depth of research and knowledge these students have achieved during their time in this program,” she said.

This year’s senior presentations were: Investigating Inequalities in Access to Covid Testing by Luke Kotsides; Testing the Existence of Batesian Mimicry in Northern Water Snakes and Eastern Copperheads by Django Accardi; Application of GPR in Detecting Small to Midsize Fossils and Artifacts by Jakob Baron; Assessing the Potential Application of a Targeted Basic Income Program in Hamilton County, NY by Siddhartha Lama; Energetic Efficiency of a Tidal Turbine by Nick Laskowski; and Simulating the Environment of Europa to Investigate the Lifetimes and Degradation Rates of Amino Acids When Irradiated in the Presence of Salt by Adeline Delessio.